Weathering the Weather
Whether the weather be fine, Whether the weather be not,
Whether the weather be cold, Whether the weather be hot,
We’ll weather the weather, Whatever the weather
Whether we like it or not!
Cheese and Mushroom Bread Pudding
8 ounces crusty country-style white or wheat bread
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 large shallot, minced
2 large portobello mushrooms
1 tablespoon chopped fresh rosemary
1 tablespoon chopped fresh thyme
1/2 cup sweet Marsala
3 ounces creamy goat cheese
3 ounces gorgonzola or blue cheese
3 ounces goat feta cheese
2 cups half-and-half
4 large eggs
1/2 teaspoons salt
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1/4 cup finely grated Parmigiano-Reggiano
Preheat oven to 375°F.
Butter an 8-inch soufflé dish. Cut bread with crust into 1-inch cubes (about 5 cups loosely packed). Spread cubes out on large rimmed baking sheet and bake for 15 minutes, until they are beginning to brown.
Meanwhile, heat olive oil and sauté shallots and mushrooms over high heat until mushrooms are dark brown. Add rosemary and thyme; cook 1 minute. Add Marsala and cook until almost all liquid has evaporated and the remainder is slightly syrupy.
Place cubes in very large bowl. Add mushroom mixture; toss to coat. Sprinkle with salt and pepper. Let cool.
Add cheeses to bread cubes and place mixture in greased soufflé dish.
Whisk milk, half-and-half, eggs, salt, and ground pepper in large bowl and pour over bread and cheese. Sprinkle Parmesan cheese over top. DO AHEAD: Can be prepared 1 day ahead. Cover and refrigerate.
Preheat oven to 350°F. Bake uncovered until set and top is golden, about 45 minutes. Let stand 15 minutes.
Note: This works well as a “stuffing” cooked outside a chicken or turkey.